Posts for category: Dental Procedures
Dental implants have soared in popularity thanks to their life-likeness, functionality and durability. But these prized qualities have also created an ironic downside—people are much more likely to replace a tooth with an implant rather than go through the time and effort to preserve it.
We say downside because even though an implant is as close to a real tooth as we can now achieve in dentistry, it still can't rival the real thing. It's usually in your long-term health interest to save a tooth if reasonably possible. And, there are effective ways to do so.
Most dental problems arise from two common oral diseases. One is tooth decay, caused by contact with acid produced by bacteria living in dental plaque. We can often minimize the damage by treating the early cavities decay can create. But if we don't treat it in time, the decay can advance into the tooth's pulp chamber, putting the tooth in danger of loss.
We can intervene, though, using root canal therapy, in which we drill into the tooth to access its interior. We clean out the decayed tooth structure, remove the diseased pulp tissue and fill the empty chamber and root canals to seal the tooth and later crown it to further protect it from re-infection.
Periodontal (gum) disease also begins with bacteria, but in this case the infection is in the gum tissues. Over time the ensuing inflammation locks into battle with the plaque-fueled infection. This stalemate ultimately weakens gum attachment, the roots and supporting bone that can also increases risk for tooth loss.
We can stop a gum infection through a variety of techniques, all following a similar principle—completely removing any accumulated plaque and tartar from the teeth and gums. This stops the infection and starts the process of gum and bone healing.
You should be under no illusions that either of these approaches will be easy. Advanced tooth decay can be complex and often require the skills of an endodontist (a specialist in root canals). Likewise, gum disease may require surgical intervention. But even with these difficulties, it's usually worth it to your dental health to consider saving your tooth first before you replace it with an implant.
If you would like more information on how best to treat a problem tooth, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Save a Tooth or Get an Implant?”
Sometimes the simplest aesthetic changes are the most dramatic. In fact, simply by lightening the color of your teeth by just a few shades, your entire appearance can look much more vibrant and youthful!
If you're currently unhappy with your dull, stained teeth, you will be pleased to learn that is actually quite easy to make over your smile with tooth whitening treatment provided by your Fargo, ND, dentists, Drs. Jon and Brad Anderson of Anderson Dental. Read on to learn more!
Whitening your teeth is quick and simple
Have you previously tried over-the-counter whitening products, but given up on them because of the lackluster results and long time requirements? In contrast with these OTC products, professional whiteners used by your Fargo dentists contain a higher formulation of hydrogen peroxide, a natural chemical that safely bleaches teeth and removing deep enamel stains. This provides much better results than drug store products, in just a fraction of the time!
In fact, just about an hour after the whitening gel is applied, your teeth will be noticeably whiter. Many people notice a three-to-eight shade difference in their teeth after whitening. (Take-home kits are also available for whitening at home or touching up your results.)
Professional whitening helps you avoid common pitfalls
Both uneven appearance and sensitivity can be a problem with OTC products. Fortunately, with professional treatment, our dentist carefully covers the fronts of your teeth with whitening gel to ensure that every part of them is whitened. You'll also receive a thorough teeth cleaning before whitening to remove every speck of plaque or tartar.
Although hydrogen peroxide is perfectly safe for your teeth, the gel can cause sensitivity if it comes in contact with your roots or gums. Before your treatment begins, your dentist will apply a gel that forms a protective barrier on your gums and roots. You'll also wear plastic retractors that hold your mouth away from your teeth during your treatment.
Avoiding stain-causing substances can help you prolong your results
Following your professional whitening treatment, your smile could stay noticeably whiter for two to three years. You can also prevent new stains from developing by quitting smoking and avoiding foods/beverages that tend to cause stains, such as wine, tea, coffee, cola, soy sauce, berries, and brightly colored sports drinks and ice pops.
Give us a call!
Revitalize your smile with tooth whitening! Call your Fargo, ND, dentists, Drs. Jon and Brad Anderson of Anderson Dental at (701) 232-1368 to schedule an appointment.
Your teeth are sound and healthy—but appearance-wise, they're nothing to write home about. It's nothing major: a chip, some heavy staining or perhaps a slight gap between the front teeth. But whatever the blemish, it bothers you every time you look in the mirror.
There's an affordable way to improve your smile without a lot of extensive treatment: porcelain veneers. These thin layers of dental porcelain are bonded to the teeth's exterior to mask the blemishes beneath. All you and others can see, though, are beautiful teeth blending seamlessly with the rest of your natural teeth.
Changing your smile with veneers begins with a consultation with your cosmetic dentist. During your visit you'll discuss what you would like to improve and how you would like your smile to appear afterward. It's helpful to take along magazine photos or other images of how you'd like your teeth to look.
After making impressions and getting other necessary measurements, your dentist may then be able to show you what your new veneers will look like. One way is through computer software that superimposes your proposed new look onto a photograph of your face. Your dentist may also be able to create test veneers with acrylic or other dental materials and apply them to your teeth. These aren't your permanent veneers, but they can still give you a realistic view of your future smile.
Once your measurements are on the way to the dental lab to custom create your veneers, your dentist must prepare your teeth for bonding. Although veneers are quite thin, they may still appear bulky when bonded to the teeth. To create a more natural look, you'll probably need some of the enamel layer of your teeth removed to accommodate the extra width. Even though this is a small amount, it will permanently alter your teeth and require some form of restoration from then on.
After your veneers arrive, the dentist will attach them with a translucent cement that will bond them seamlessly to the natural teeth. You and others won't be able to see where the veneer ends and the natural tooth begins. What you will see, though, is a new look for your teeth and a more attractive smile.
If you would like more information on porcelain veneers, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Porcelain Veneers: Strength & Beauty as Never Before.”
Are you unhappy with the appearance of your teeth? Upgrade your smile with porcelain veneers, offered by your Fargo, ND, cosmetic dentists, Dr. Breding and Dr. Jon Anderson and Dr. Brad Anderson of Anderson Dental.
Porcelain veneers improve many types of smile issues
Veneers may be a good choice for you if:
- You have a few flaws: Noticeable chips and cracks can develop in your teeth after years of wear and tear. Fortunately, it's easy to hide these flaws by attaching porcelain veneers to your teeth. The restorations can also be used to hide other flaws, like pits or bumps in your tooth enamel.
- A gap between your teeth makes you feel self-conscious: Slight gaps can be easily concealed simply by adding a few veneers to your teeth.
- You're concerned about discolorations: Whether you have a single discolored tooth or want to whiten all of your teeth, porcelain veneers are an excellent option. The restorations can be manufactured in many shades of white. If you want to hide just one discolored tooth, your Fargo, ND, cosmetic dentist will match the shade of your veneer to the color of adjacent teeth. When whitening is your goal, you can choose the shade of white you prefer.
- You have a short tooth: Tooth enamel can be worn down if you happen to grind or clench your teeth at night. Fortunately, it's easy to length short teeth with veneers.
- One of your teeth looks a little unusual: It's not uncommon to have one or two teeth that are oddly shaped, whether they're pointed or just a little crooked. Shape-changing porcelain veneers can completely transform these teeth.
How do veneers work?
Veneers cover the fronts of your teeth only and don't require extensive preparation. In fact, your Fargo dentist will only remove a tiny amount of enamel from your teeth during your first veneer appointment. He'll also make an impression of your teeth to ensure that your new veneers fit perfectly. Permanent veneers are attached with dental cement, which can be tinted to help you achieve your desired tooth shade.
Regular brushing and flossing will keep your veneers in good condition. Although veneers are tough, they can break if you bite on ice and other hard objects or use your teeth to open bottles or packages.
Renew your smile with porcelain veneers! Call your Fargo, ND, cosmetic dentists, Dr. Breding, Dr. Jon Anderson and Dr. Brad Anderson of Anderson Dental, at (701) 232-1368 to schedule an appointment.
Sometimes it seems that appearances count for everything—especially in Hollywood. But just recently, Lonnie Chaviz, the 10-year-old actor who plays young Randall on the hit TV show This Is Us, delivered a powerful message about accepting differences in body image. And the whole issue was triggered by negative social media comments about his smile.
Lonnie has a noticeable diastema—that is, a gap between his two front teeth; this condition is commonly seen in children, but is less common in adults. There are plenty of celebrities who aren’t bothered by the excess space between their front teeth, such as Michael Strahan, Lauren Hutton and Vanessa Paradis. However, there are also many people who choose to close the gap for cosmetic or functional reasons.
Unfortunately, Lonnie had been on the receiving end of unkind comments about the appearance of his smile. But instead of getting angry, the young actor posted a thoughtful reply via Instagram video, in which he said: “I could get my gap fixed. Braces can fix this, but like, can you fix your heart, though?”
Lonnie is raising an important point: Making fun of how someone looks shows a terrible lack of compassion. Besides, each person’s smile is uniquely their own, and getting it “fixed” is a matter of personal choice. It’s true that in most circumstances, if the gap between the front teeth doesn’t shrink as you age and you decide you want to close it, orthodontic appliances like braces can do the job. Sometimes, a too-big gap can make it more difficult to eat and to pronounce some words. In other situations, it’s simply a question of aesthetics—some like it; others would prefer to live without it.
There’s a flip side to this issue as well. When teeth need to be replaced, many people opt to have their smile restored just the way it was, rather than in some “ideal” manner. That could mean that their dentures are specially fabricated with a space between the front teeth, or the crowns of their dental implants are spaced farther apart than they normally would be. For these folks, the “imperfection” is so much a part of their unique identity that changing it just seems wrong.
So if you’re satisfied with the way your smile looks, all you need to do is keep up with daily brushing and flossing, and come in for regular checkups and cleanings to keep it healthy and bright. If you’re unsatisfied, ask us how we could help make it better. And if you need tooth replacement, be sure to talk to us about all of your options—teeth that are regular and “Hollywood white;” teeth that are natural-looking, with minor variations in color and spacing; and teeth that look just like the smile you’ve always had.
Because when it comes to your smile, we couldn’t agree more with what Lonnie Chaviz said at the end of his video: “Be who you want to be. Do what you want to do. Do you. Be you. Believe in yourself.”
If you have questions about cosmetic dentistry, please contact our office or schedule a consultation. You can read more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Beautiful Smiles by Design” and “The Magic of Orthodontics.”